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Baseball Insider: February 8, 2009 - February 14, 2009

Mets Sign Livan Hernandez

For weeks, Mets general manager Omar Minaya has been assuring reporters that the team wasn't going to add any big players before the start of spring training. Usually, the questions came in connection with the still unsigned Manny Ramirez, and he's Minaya has been absolutely insistent that his team isn't...

By Cameron Smith  | February 14, 2009; 12:37 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Mets  
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Seattle's $5 Million Marketing Plan: Ken Griffey

If you believe any of what's being written in the Seattle press, slugging outfielder Ken Griffey Jr. is on his way back to the Mariners, where he got his big league career started. There's no contract in place yet, but all indications are that Mariners general manager Jack Zduriencik and...

By Cameron Smith  | February 14, 2009; 1:00 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Mariners  
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A Landmark Lawsuit for NCAA Prospects

Sometimes it's the subtle changes that have the biggest effect on a traditional game like baseball. The ruling in this lawsuit may not provide a sea-change about how high school and college prospects are shopped to major league baseball, but it could greatly change how open players are to signing...

By Cameron Smith  | February 13, 2009; 12:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Twins  
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Nats: The Shape of Things

The Adam Dunn trade puts a lot of players back in lineup spots where they should feel fairly comdfortable and not overmatched. This is one of those team chemistry factors that is hardto measure but, if you watched the Nats last year, game after game, you could feel it. Young...

By Thomas Boswell  | February 13, 2009; 12:06 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (14)
 
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The Sweetest Sounds

For anyone who works in baseball, or who simply loves the game, the offseason is marked and measured by holidays. Barring any highly unusual circumstances, you're usually home by Halloween (no small matter when you have kids). Thanksgiving seems to be upon you before you've even had a chance to...

By Dave Sheinin  | February 13, 2009; 10:48 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (11)
 
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Sheets' Surgery Successful

According to FOX Sports' Ken Rosenthal, Ben Sheets had his elbow surgery performed yesterday, and, after a successful procedure without incident, he should be ready to return for the second half of the season. Legendary Birmingham, Ala. surgeon James Andrews performed the operation on Sheets, repairing his partial tear of...

By Cameron Smith  | February 13, 2009; 10:39 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Brewers, Rangers  
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Brewers Sign Braden Looper

He may not be CC Sabathia or Ben Sheets, but the Brewers did add a new starting pitching by signing Braden Looper on Thursday. The Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel's Tom Haudricourt was all over the signing from beginning to end the past couple of days (at one point he got Looper's wife...

By Cameron Smith  | February 12, 2009; 9:19 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (0)
Categories:  Brewers  
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Lefty Relievers: Only Four Left

Remember when we broke down the five remaining left-handed relievers about a week ago? Times change quickly when you're headed toward Spring Training, and now there are four. And, judging by the increased interest in free agent Will Ohman, there will probably only be three available, at most, by the...

By Cameron Smith  | February 12, 2009; 4:03 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Athletics, Braves, Dodgers, Mets, Phillies, Rockies  
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Alomar Responds to AIDS Claims

According to former longtime second baseman Roberto Alomar, the claims that he has AIDS -- and did while insisting on having unprotected sex with a now-ex girlfriend for four years -- are completely fabricated. If there was any question about how the former Blue Jay, Oriole, Indian and Met would...

By Cameron Smith  | February 12, 2009; 12:27 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (8)
Categories:  Blue Jays, Indians, Mets, Orioles  
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Dodgers Sign Randy Wolf

The Dodgers' whirlwind courtship and acquisition of Randy Wolf is official finished, and it's ended with one-year $5 million deal back with the Dodgers, where he's always lived and considered home. It's a good deal for Wolf, but an article in today's Los Angeles Daily News is particularly revealing. In...

By Cameron Smith  | February 12, 2009; 11:15 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Dodgers  
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Thursday Three-Bagger: Dunn, Manny, Selig

1. To what extent do Adam Dunn's defensive shortcomings negate his offensive contributions? We'll let some folks who are smarter than us tell you (scroll to the bottom of the page to the "Value" section). According to these advanced metrics, Dunn essentially was worth 27.4 runs of offense last year...

By Dave Sheinin  | February 12, 2009; 9:30 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
 
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Yankees Won't Try to Void A-Rod Contract

According to this story in this morning's New York Post, the Yankees are not about to try and escape from Alex Rodriguez's massive, $275 million contract because of his admitted use of performance enhancing substances. When asked about trying to void the deal, which is the largest in baseball history,...

By Cameron Smith  | February 11, 2009; 5:26 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (2)
Categories:  Yankees  
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Alomar Sued in AIDS Scandal

Though this one has nothing to do with anything on the field. According to a report in the New York Daily News, former Orioles, Indians, Mets, Blue Jays, Padres and White Sox second baseman Roberto Alomar is being sued by his ex-girlfriend, who claims he insisted on continuing to have...

By Cameron Smith  | February 11, 2009; 11:22 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (7)
Categories:  Mets  
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Abreu to Sign With Angels

Former All-Star outfielder Bobby Abreu has found his new home, and it's a long way from the ones he's made in Philadelphia and New York. According to Sports Illustrated's Jon Heyman, Abreu has agreed on a one-year deal with the Los Angeles Angels of Anaheim worth approximately $5 million. The...

By Cameron Smith  | February 11, 2009; 10:24 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Angels  
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Andruw Jones Completes Rangers Deal

So, it's official: Andruw Jones is a Texas Ranger. Now comes the hard part: Trying to figure out why he decided to sign with the Rangers. Among the offers extended to Jones -- and it's unsure exactly how many there were -- two seemed to stand out: The Yankees and,...

By Cameron Smith  | February 11, 2009; 2:40 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (5)
Categories:  Rangers, Yankees  
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Padres Trade Matt Bush to Blue Jays

Last week, Dave launched into the incredibly depressing story of Matt Bush, the Padres' No. 1 overall draft pick in 2004 who was dropped from the team last week after his latest ridiculous off-field incident ... in which he threw a high school lacrosse player and "represented" his high school...

By Cameron Smith  | February 10, 2009; 6:41 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (3)
Categories:  Blue Jays, Padres  
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Tejada Charged With Lying

Just a quick post to drop in a link to the story by Dave and reporter Del Quentin Wilbur, who are reporting that former Oriole turned Astros shortstop Miguel Tejada has been charged with lying to congressional investigators about the use of performance-enhancing drugs, connected not with his own use,...

By Cameron Smith  | February 10, 2009; 2:05 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (4)
Categories:  Astros, Orioles  
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Union Addresses Key Question in A-Rod Affair

Donald Fehr, head of baseball's union, just issued a statement that addressed one of the critical questions stemming from the revelation about Alex Rodriguez's positive steroids test in 2003: Why were the results from the 2003 "survey" testing not destroyed? The statement also reiterated the union's denial to the charge...

By Dave Sheinin  | February 9, 2009; 9:23 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (15)
 
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Alex Rodriguez Confirms Steroids Report [Updated]

Alex Rodriguez acknowledged today using steroids while with the Texas Rangers, saying he did so because of the pressure to live up to his $252 million contract with the Rangers before the 2001 season. Rodriguez admitted using performance-enhancing drugs in an interview with ESPN's Peter Gammons which will air in...

By Dave Sheinin  | February 9, 2009; 4:36 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (96)
 
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Two Minor Signings of Significance

A couple of relatively minor moves so far today, though they could have a bigger impact on the other teams who didn't sign the players. The first, and larger, signing came out in San Francisco, where Rich Aurilia reportedly agreed to a minor league deal to return to the Giants,...

By Cameron Smith  | February 9, 2009; 1:40 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (1)
Categories:  Giants, Rays  
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Six Lingering Questions In the A-Rod Matter

1. How is Rodriguez going to respond? I see three realistic choices: a) The "legal matter" no-comment. ("Because this matter is the subject of an ongoing legal process, I have been advised not to comment on it. I hope one day soon to be able to give my side of...

By Dave Sheinin  | February 9, 2009; 8:35 AM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (10)
 
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Phillies Sign Howard For Three Years

If you saw the Phillies and Ryan Howard coming to an agreement before an arbitration hearing, well, we're tempted to call your bluff. That being said, anyone who would have predicted that eventuality would also be prescient, because the slugging first baseman and Philadelphia have reportedly struck a three-year deal...

By Cameron Smith  | February 8, 2009; 2:35 PM ET  |  Permalink  |  Comments (6)
Categories:  Phillies  
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